EU Annual Report on Human Rights and Democracy in the World in 2012

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The adoption of the EU's Annual Report on Human Rights and Democracy in the World for 2012 was a significant moment for human rights internationally. This report charts the work of the EU on human rights across the full range of the EU's external relations and highlights the EU's main achievements.

2012 was a landmark year for human rights in the EU's external relations. On 25 June, the Union adopted the Strategic Framework on Human Rights and Democracy, the first ever set of principles and objectives to guide our work on promoting human rights around the world.

The Strategic Framework is linked to an Action Plan, ensuring that our good intentions translate into tangible results.

Therefore, this year for the first time, the Annual report has been restructured to show progress in the implementation of the Action Plan.

It gives insights and detailed description of EU achievements; and guides our future work, pointing to fields where urgent progress is needed. The Annual Report provides the basis for us to assume our responsibility. It allows us to map progress in a clear, simple and systematic way and to point out where further progress is most urgently needed. It serves as an inspiration to keep up the important work and make human rights, fundamental freedoms and democracy not just a privilege of the few, but a reality for everybody, no matter where they are born.

A second part covering EU actions in third countries is due to be released in September.